Page last updated at 07:59 GMT, Wednesday, 4 June 2008 08:59 UK

Writer Morris 'remarries' partner

Jan Morris
Jan Morris broke the news about the civil partnership on BBC Radio 4's Bookclub

A sex-change author has "remarried" the woman she wed nearly 60 years ago.

Jan Morris, who was born James Humphrey Morris, divorced from wife Elizabeth in 1972 before a sex change operation.

Despite the divorce, the pair still lived together in Llanystumdwy, Gwynedd, and have now had a civil partnership ceremony.

Morris made the announcement about the civil partnership on BBC Radio 4's Bookclub programme as she spoke about her latest book.

She said on the programme: "I like to think I have a rounded life - so far it's been pretty rounded I think and it's going to be more rounded still because for two reasons.

"One is I have written a posthumous book which I have already sold, I have got the advance but they won't pay me the rest.

"That's one thing, the other thing is more touching and I haven't told this to anybody before.

"I have lived with the same person for 58 years.

"We were married when I was young... and then this sex change thing so-called happened, so we naturally had to divorce - so we were divorced but we have always lived together anyway.

"So I wanted to round this thing off nicely and last week, as a matter of fact, Elizabeth and I went and had a civil union."


Presenter James Naughtie, who said on the Bookclub website that Morris's contribution brought a "special excitement" to the programme, congratulated the author.

Morris has been previously named by The Times as the 15th greatest British post-war writer.

The former journalist, who reported on the 1953 conquest of Everest, had studied at Sandhurst and Oxford.

Morris's work Pax Britannica, a history of the British Empire was written while the sex change procedure was completed.

Known for writing about locations including Hong Kong, Venice and Oxford, her novel Last Letters from Hav was shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

Naughtie said the Bookclub show with Jan Morris was "one of these Bookclubs that could have gone on for hours," and described the announcement of Morris's civil partnership as "a touching personal revelation".

Author plans posthumous comeback
29 Feb 08 |  Entertainment


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